The Practitioner Corner: Casting Within

By Kate Mullane Robertson, C.S.

I was headed up to camp from our home in town for the first day of staff training — probably my favorite day of the year. But as I came through the front gate, I was still struggling with my first assignment for the day — to speak in an inspiring way about that year’s metaphysical theme.

It was a scriptural statement, from the book of John, I’d been working with since early January. I’d prayed with it, studied it in context, considered its practical relevance — and still, I was feeling less than inspired about its essential message. It reads:  “Cast the net on the right side of the ship, and ye shall find.”

Something about it had poked at me for months. I struggled with the concept that there was a right side and a wrong side, a left side or a right side. How could this be true, where God is All-in-all, omnipresent good. It felt full of duality in a world that already seemed more than willing to take up sides and cast its judgments on one side or the other.

Kate giving a metaphysical talk at A/U Ranches

I drove slowly up the South Woods Road hoping, at least, to find comfort and assurance in the fact that it was Jesus, himself, who had made this recommendation to his disciples on the eve of his ascension. His disciples were facing an unclear path forward in the aftermath of their master’s crucifixion and resurrection, and this was his guidance.

Pausing at the fork in the camp road, just before heading up to Valerie Lodge for the metaphysical kick-off to that summer’s staff training, I asked again, “God, if you want me to share an inspired, relevant message at this staff gathering of devoted spiritual thinkers, now would be a great time to share that with me.”

Within a moment, I heard, “What if the “right side” is not the left or the right, the right or the wrong, this side or that side, here or there? What if the “right side” is actually the IN side. Remember: The kingdom of God is within you. Cast your net within.”

Immediately, the entire inspirational message for that morning filled my heart – without the medium of personal thought-taking. Jesus’ gospel of “the kingdom of God is within you” had long been a core spiritual truth for me, and I knew with conviction that it would meet every need for each counselor, director, ranch hand, counselor-in-training, camper, Christian Science practitioner or nurse, and bunkhouse parent throughout the summer. Whether they were on the river, in scree fields at 12,000 feet, in the kitchen, on horseback, in a canoe or in the bunkhouse, “the kingdom of God” was already within their grasp.

Kate speaking with seasonal staff at the A/U Ranches

Every Bible Lesson, each inspirational quote, article, conversation with a counselor, camp director, practitioner or nurse would simply be a road sign pointing each person in the same direction that Jesus had pointed his disciples, and those who asked when the kingdom of God should come: “The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:20, 21)

With that inspiration, I was ready. And I knew they were, too. Everyone had a full measure of that “gospel of the kingdom” within them — an infinite well of divine presence to be drawn upon for inspiration, freedom from fear, transformation, healing, strength, humility and peace. That summer I always knew exactly where to cast my own net, and where to point others as they looked for inspired guidance. That metaphysical theme still inspires me daily.

This column includes messages from a different Christian Science practitioner each season. If you’d like to request a topic for our next issue, please email us at [email protected].

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